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kristenfl

Our new granite/help me make it look great

kristenfl
14 years ago

Has anyone here used Taylor Cabinet Door Company? I'm thinking about doing a compete switch to cherry doors (thanks a lot cat mom!). I just love the look of her cherry doors with the dark granite.

When I put in the Brazilian black granite, the gray floor that once looked so modern (it is new and is modern) mixed with the European white cabinets just all of a sudden looked dated. I think that when people mix wooden floors with that look, it looks so much better. I do have wooden floors right through the door to the family room, but the overall feel of the kitchen just bugs me now. What to do, what to do!

Before/Circa 1988 but with new appliances and pulls

After with Brazilian Black Granite/Sink side of galley kitchen

Other side from breakfast nook (if you look on the counter nearest to you on the left, you might see my black rainbow and big green fleck)

This is a closeup of the area that is not consistant with the rest of the counters. I know, granite isn't perfect, but this is not the slab I chose. He went back and got another because he didn't have enough. It's hard to take a picture, but on a counter that reads black and is consistant most of the time, the two imperfections stick out.

Here is my seam in front of my sink. I couldn't get a good picture that showed what I see. They fixed it a little, but the cut was jagged compared to the back seam. There is also a blob of epoxy in the front. It just stands out to me.

I'll love all of you "kitchen professionals" to take on this kitchen and give me some ideas of what to do next. I thought maybe the cherry doors, maybe with some uppers having aluminum and glass in them??? Perhaps a stainless steel backsplash...tile or simple pattern? I looked back at a lot of kitchen picture that I had saved that I liked. All of them had the cherry or cherry mixed with maple along with dark counters. Again, what do YOU think?

Comments (25)

  • homey_bird
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Of course, cherry cabinets will add a special warmth and color to your kitchen. That is a great idea. In addition, you might want to change the paint on the walls and the backsplash as well -- since they too are light right now and will continue to bug you!

    For the backsplash, IMO stainless steel would be too much steel....you might want to consider tiles. Small slate tiles come to the mind since they have hues ranging from gray-black to rust; which would tie your cabs and counters. However, slate has a texture, and if you cook really greasy food, then cleaning would be a pain!

    Then, you can bring a beautiful rug and lay it below your range to complete your beautiful kitchen.

    Best of luck and have fun!

  • cat_mom
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Of course, I am biased towards cherry cabs/doors (!), so I think they would look terrific with your granite--sorry kristenfl! I think white with the black is a nice look, too though, very crisp and clean looking.

    As for your seam in front of your sink, ours looks pretty much like yours. Our guys did a wonderful job with our granite, but the seam isn't as nice as it could have been (my sister even commented that her seam, done by the same guys, was nicer). Maybe the blade they used to cut our stone wasn't sharp enough, maybe the mica in our stone flaked, who knows. We did have them make the seam darker, which helped a lot (it blended in better).

    If that "blob" of epoxy is on top of the stone, you can try to gently buff it off with some very fine steel wool, or take the flat edge of a razor and carefully scrape it off, which is what the granite guys did after re-doing our seam, and after filling in a little chip elsewhere.

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  • glad
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    nothing against cherrry, whic i love, too. but i love the crispness of balck and white. my neighbor's granite looks similar to yours. she has whie cabinets and black and white marble floors. looks very current.

  • fnzzy
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    for what its worth, your seam looks pretty much like mine....since I had never really seen any other seams I have no idea if it's good or not.

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Honey Bird,

    Thanks for your reply. To be truthful, our big wall that goes from the kitchen to the family room was just painted gray. It is a nice warm gray, but in some of the pics looks much lighter than it is. It really looks nice in contrast to our floors. I also have one gray wall in our living room. I plan for some art with lots of colors and gray seemed like a nice neutral background.

    I think the backsplash depends on the cabinets. If I keep white, It will been to be a SS backsplash with some pizazz..like a mosaic, a tile, or a pattern. If I put a slate up there, it would have to have lots of light ones in there too. Everything is just too dark now. The other thing that I'm looking into is a soft green glass background. My table in the dining room has a top like that and I love it. It looks wonderful. What do you think of that?

    The rug idea sound great, but I don't think we'll ever have one there. I'd just end up tripping over it and it would forever need to be washed.

    Cat Mom,

    I'm not ashamed to say I want your kitchen! You did such a wonderful job on it. I wish that I could have your backsplash. With the white cabinets I have now, it would seriously look too Hollywood. Maybe with the warmth of cherry???? I went to the website and it doesn't say anything about price. Do you mind me asking how much a square foot it was?

    My seam looks better than it did originally, but something about the way it was cut, the shade of the filler, and the flecks around it just make it stand out. So, you had them come back and make yours darker? That might be the answer.
    What do you think of my granite rainbow? I was wondering what everyone thought. The rest is nice and even. If there were more of them, I wouldn't notice as much. It ticked me off everytime I walked in the room in the beginning, but now it just catches my eye and I say a bad word and forget about it until the next time. Maybe in time I won't notice.

    Does your cabinet company do replacement doors and veneers?

    buffetgirl, is yours at the sink, too? I felt the same as you about the smears. I couldn't get the sink side of the granite clean. They came back and cleaned it with acetone and it's very nice now. I'm learning to leave the drips for later too. I don't like having to be so careful, but again, in time I guess I'll get used to it. I can't even read the soapstone posts now because I feel like it was probably more me. I still think I would have longed for different cabinets then too.

    For everyone: Has anyone used the Taylor Cabinet Door Company??? I'm going to receive a catalog, and they will send you a door for 19.95 as a sample to see the quality. Any other suggestions for doors?

    I know that my kitchen is not as interesting a puzzle as some of those big beautiful plans out there, but I REALLY do need all of the suggestions I can get. I , obviously am seriously design challenged at this time. If I see it, I know that I like it. Finding what I like on my own and knowing what it will look like together is the problem. I need your vision!!!!!

    Here's a picture that shows a corner of my dining room table so you can see the glass.

  • lascatx
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    If you get cherry doors, con't forget the side panels and trim pieces. That gets more involved than you might be thinking.

    First thing I would do is change the cabinet hardware to update it. Look at something in a black iron look or possibly brished nickel, but somthing not so stark. I'd like knobs on the uppers myself, and you might be able to do that if the doors are painted nad you can fill and touch up carefully.

    I'd also like a piece of simple crown on tp of the cabinets. You can still keep a clean line and modern look but also make them look more finished -- especially with all that space above them. It doesn't have to be a lot, and I would go for something simpler and straigher than the very traditional style crown that is most often used.

    You could even use it to hide rope lighting or a string of Christmas mini lights that could light up your decorative pieces (set up on blocks so they show above the trim). Without having to run wires, just plug them into an extension cord and run the cord through the baack corner of the cabinet. Drill another hole at the bottom and you can plug them into an adapter with a switch. Best if you can run the cord down ina corner or where you can hide it behind a canister or something on the counter.

    I would also get a rug. You can get kitchen rugs with non-slip backings -- even cushioned mats. I'd try to pick up some of the warm colors from your family room.

    I do like the idea of glass on the backsplash. Staineless could be good also, but I like the idea of glass and the clean simple look paired with what you ahve already.

    I can't tell if all your walls are the same color or not. Youve got different angles and lighting going on. If so, you may not want to repaint the whole area, but a color onthe back kitchen wall as an accent would be a possibility.

  • cat_mom
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    kristenfl,

    First, thank you so much for your compliments, it means a lot to me that you (and everyone else here on GW) like what we did with our kitchen. It was a really big deal for us to be able to have it done. I honestly never thought it would happen in my lifetime!

    Let's see if I can answer some questions for you:

    The tile came from Artistic Tile, and it cost about $43/sq ft. Definitely not cheap (though 1/2 the price of some others we really liked, so it practically seemed a bargain by the time we saw that one!). It was exactly the look we wanted and by the time we got to the backsplash, it was "in for a penny, in for a pound."

    Granite seam: ours has been done/re-done a few times already. They filled it in more and darkened it shortly after install, and it looked much better than it did initially. Then, at some point a few months later, the seam started lifting (cabinets settling?), so they cleaned out the seam, cut the caulk at the sink, put in some small shims, re-leveled the stone by the seam, and then re-filled and polished the seam. It looked the best at that point. Then, sometime in December, I noticed my microfiber cloth was catching on the seam when cleaning or just wiping up water after using the sink. Wouldn't you know it? The seam had started to lift again. The guy came out, but couldn't get the stone to move. They will come back out in the spring to level it again, but in the meantime, he cleaned out the seam and re-filled it because he felt the slight crack/separation of the epoxy would let water get down into the seam and down to the cab below (?). With any luck, they'll come, get it level, and it will stay that way forever and they'll do the ultimate best looking job (on our seam) of all!

    I'm not sure if those "imperfections" in the counter are anything that would warrant them replacing the piece. If it's not the slab you'd chosen, and if you didn't give a final approval for the piece they ended up using, maybe you would have some recourse, but I just don't know. Maybe our resident stone experts will weigh in.

    I'm not sure if Royal does any sort of rplacement doors or veneers, but you can always call and ask them. It never hurts to ask!

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks so much for your answers. I know I'm desperate for answers because I kept on checking to see if anyone would give me an ahah! answer.

    Guess what? I just painted and it took me 6 samples on the accent wall to pick the perfect gray. I do like that, and probably won't change it. If I wanted to, my DH would probably nix the idea since it was done already and he likes it too. That wall, as I said, goes into the family room. It matches the felt on the pool table. We are doing a bookcase area on the back wall of the pool table room that will hold our computer and have storage.

    We plan for some colorful pieces of art on the tall wall next to the breakfast nook behind where I'm taking the pictures in the kitchen. We may be able to add another accent color there. Years ago I left that wall smooth, thinking that I would wallpaper it like people did then. I'll try to take some pictures of that area tomorrow. It's been the holding area for my kitchen junk...hence, no pictures.

    As I said, our cabinets are 1988 European white laminate. They had the tell tale chrome handles. Last year, I replaced them with the most modern satin nickel handles that I could find at Expo that would fit the holes. I wanted long bar ones, but didn't know how to hide the old holes. They do match the sink, appliances, and the faucet. If I did get new cabinets, I would definitely change them though.

    The rug idea seem great, but with such a little area between the cabinets, and what I'd like to look like a NY loft kind of look, and especially a DH who said, "Rug"???(Are you nuts? look as he says it) I don't think it will ever happen. Really, it would not work with two teenage boy and two act like teenager adults. I truly love our floors, the white and granite black cabinets are not doing it justice IMO. I've got to figure it all out.

    Cat mom, your tile was worth every penny. It's a work of art and makes your kitchen. My oldest son, 16, just loves it.

    Wait until you hear what I did after you said that they made your epoxy darker. I took a razor blade, shaved the thing on the end of the seam down a little, then took Crayola (yes I said Crayola) acrylic black paint and dabed it here and there on the seam a rubbed it in. It looks so much better darker. I hope it stays! I've already washed over it, and it did. Cross your fingers! Here it is.

  • debbie_2008
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I don't know what your seam looked like before but it looks great now!

  • cat_mom
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Now if tile can win the approval of a 16 year old boy, you know you have a winner!!! LOL!

    Many of us have used black Sharpie markers to darken seams or fill in scratches on black granite (I think it eventually wears off on the epoxy after many cleanings, but is easily reapplied!). If you want the marker to last a little longer, you can go over the seam with a little bit of your sealer on a rag or paper towel (our sealer also polishes, so it gives the seam a little more shine, which hides it better since it's bordered on both sides by our shiny granite).

  • lascatx
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I didn't see the laminate -- that does reduce the options.

    I understand the painting issue -- I have the same one here and we painted the very little wall space in our kitchen to match the breakfast room and family room.

    When you talk about a kitchen rug, you are not talking about cotton or wool -- if you cook a lot. You are talking about nylon, acrylic or a foam type surface that can probably be taken outside and hosed down or thrown in the washer. They can be inexpensive and cushion your work zone. I have one in front of my cooktop with 4 people, 2 dogs and 2 cats. Prints and dark colrs help, but really, synthetics don't soak up and stain like the natural fibers.

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks, Debbie and Cat Mom.

    Cat mom, It was late when I was typing, but you're right about my son. My point was, and I forgot to include this, is that he is sick of hearing about, "Countertops, countertops!" and when he saw your tile, I had asked him yet again to look at something for me. He literally stopped and went, "Sweet. I like that tile! You should get it" He is fussy and has great taste, too, so it really was a great endorsement.

    I tried the Sharpie first, and even mixed a silver one in too, to try to vary the colors to mix better, but the Sharpie black shines purple. So, I dabbed in the black acrylic watered down a little. It looks better in the daylight, too, which I was concerned about.

    My granite is growing on me. With the seam gone, it's better.

    I saw a picture last night that gave me an idea. I don't trust my ideas anymore (LOL), so what do you think? This kitchen has the white cabinets on top, and different ones on the bottom. I thought of changing out a couple of my top doors to aluminum and glass, and leaving a few with new slab white doors. Then, perhaps, put cherry on the bottom. Here's the link. Thoughts?

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    We must have been typing at the same time, Lascatx! I'd love to see a picture of your rug. My tile fllor doesn't bother me at all. But since we got our floors, my DH, who was always barefoot is having feet problems. He actually has asked for slippers! We realize he isn't a slipper person, so this is a cry for help. We're going to put him in Crocs!

  • remodelfla
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    kristenfl... I don't know how much $$$ is a factor ... for me it's huge. But there is this stuff called 3form glass that you can have fabricated into a single piece backsplash. You could basically do anything you want with it. If you put in some under the cabinet lighting (forgive me if I snoozed and you already have it) it might really add some cool contemporary bling. Yet another idea to ponder.

    Here is a link that might be useful: 3form glass

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks for that link. I actually went ahead already and ordered a sample! I'll have to contact the rep and see how much it is.

    I do have undercabinet lighting. It's OK, when I get writing, sometimes it's too much. So much is going on in this head of mine. It is flourescent light cases. I'm looking into getting something that would reflect more nicely in our kitchen.

  • remodelfla
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    kristenfl... I'm glad that link led you to an idea... unless you had ordered it prior to seeing the link in which case we were on the same wavelength! I'm keeping their stuff in the corner of my mind. I'm thinking it might be a cool alternative for glass door front inserts either for a pantry cabinet or upper cabinets someday.

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks again, remodelfla.

    What do you guys think of perhaps having different color cabinets on top than on the bottom in my kitchen? It would be light cherry on the bottom, and white with some aluminum and glass cabinets on top.

  • minac
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I love the contrast of the dark counter and light cabinet. Some people suggested changing to more modern hardware and adding a rug. I saw an episode of HGTV colorsplash where I thought they did an amazing job on a contemporary open kitchen. They went with dark cabinets and light counters (warmth with modern)but maybe this can help give you ideas. I thought the track lighting, the style of the cabinets and backsplash and artwork to tie it all together were great. With your counters I could see natural cherry cabinets if you were planning to change. I just can't picture the paint color or backsplash that would tie it together.

    http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/pac_ctnt_988/text/0,,HGTV_22056_66668,00.html

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Apples! That's it. Apples on the counter. That's the answer to my problem. LOL That always kills me when they stage an area with stuff like that. What about the mail? Your keys, etc.?

    No, actually that's a beautiful kitchen. I love the ideas that they used in the living room with the stripes on the wall and the colorful paintings. The bright paintings are sort of what I want to have on the wall in my breakfast nook. I actually had suggested a taupe, gray, and white stripe like that on the walls of my dining room that would carry over to the back wall of my fire place wall, but DH said, "What? I don't think so." Perhap if I showed him that picture, he may think it is a good idea for the far end of the kitchen.

    I know that I said that I would take pictures of that end of the kitchen today, but our washing machine broke down today, and it is now in pieces on the floor. Like I said before, it's always something isn't it? (Roseann Roseannadanna)

    *One other thing that I'm going to have to deal with, in other posts I told you that I had to have the counters on the stove side raised. If you look, you can see where they added wood to raise it. I'm going to have to hide that, too.

  • mysterymachine
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I love the clean lines in your kitchen - if I DID go with cherry I would want a stain that would not make the grain stand out too much. What about some wood with very straight grain?

    Too funny the first thing I thought of when I saw your kitchen is a glass backsplash but other people beat me to the suggestion.

    I won't show you a picture of my seams as you would start hating yours (I have pictures up in another thread if you really want to see them... that is if you CAN find the seams in the pictures). From what I have seen in the last year on GW though that seam is average (so not bad). That little "chip" that makes it look rough is normal, even some of mine have that - its not exactly like they are cutting butter :)

  • minac
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    LMAO - I didn't even notice the apples on the counter of the HGTV episode until you mentioned it. Make sure when you finish your kitchen remodel you strategically place apples along the counter with the big modern picture of an apple that ties it all together! What wood is your dining room chair? Would you try to bring together the same colors as the chair, chair pad, and table to the kitchen?

  • kristenfl
    Original Author
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks, Mysterymachine. I think that after living with the gray light kitchen the black on the counters just hit me hard. I agree about the cherry. It would have to be very simple...like cat mom's. Please continue to follow me with this. The support from the people on this forum, and the support of the people on the pool forum as I built my pool has helped so much to get me through the tough stuff during both projects. DH tries, but truly doesn't care as much as I do!

    I'm glad your seams are nice. When mine was lighter is was the first thing that caught my eye when I walked into the room. As I said, my back seam is perfect. I wish that I could have switched them!

    Minac, did you see? I do have apples up above my counters in a silver bowl. They were on sale at Target! My things on top are not my final choice, just stuff I picked up and put up there to make my kitchen look more finished for Christmas company. LOL.

    And yes, I guess I was leaning towards the colors in my dining room set. The chairs are cherry with a black leather seat. The table is cherry, the painted glass, and brushed silver. I thought that using that color glass would look great and bring my counter into the year 2008. If I got new door and drawers, I would go with the longer hardware too. I've included a link to my set (I got a much better deal than that!) but mine is cherry and black. It's the coolest table ever! It pulls out to a very big table for large gatherings, but pushes in to smaller for a more intimate dinner. I waited 20 years to get what I wanted!

    Glasskote contacted me today, and asked for my measurements for a bid. I'll let you know how it goes. I also ordered a sample from 3M.

    Can anyone recommend a company that would make replacement doors similiar to Cat Mom's for my cabinet guy to buy? The closest he had was a slab door in pear.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Dining Set

  • mysterymachine
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Ahhh in the pics I couldn't tell that the seam was lighter so I was just looking at the width etc - granite pics are hard I know, I've been fighting with my camera the last 2 days trying to show my granite. Hurray for the crayon!

    Is clear vertical grain fir out of the question? Its kinda soft and can be pricey but it really gives clean lines and you can make it almost any color. I remember several cabinet places having it when I was looking at places.

    {{gwi:1702658}}

  • mysterymachine
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Those shutters are cool - are you keeping them white?

  • ci_lantro
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Really love the clean contemporary look of your house!

    I'd do some sort of topper on the upper cabs--something linear looking and unfussy. White to match cabs. Add strip lighting on top of cabs.

    Also, I'd change out the pulls to something bolder/ chunkier and not curvy.

    Plus a big splash of red somewhere. Every room needs a dash of red!